Painting Bathroom Cabinets: Learn How to Paint Vanity Like a Pro!

Painting Bathroom Cabinet

Does your bathroom vanity look really bad? Don’t you like the style of it? After heavy use and exposure to moisture, the bathroom cabinets become dirty easily. But the best thing is you can easily paint them and make them look good as new. Don’t you know how to paint bathroom cabinets? Worry not, because painting bathroom cabinets is way easier than you’re thinking in your head.

So, whether you want to remodel your bathroom or just get bored with the old look of your vanity, the best way to do this is to paint! Just simply add a fresh coat of paint to your cabinets or drawers and give the right makeover. So, if you are a newbie and looking for an easy tutorial on painting bathroom cabinets, you are in the right place! Today we’ve brought a really simple step-by-step guide for you to make your painting bathroom cabinet project an easy and smooth process. 

The whole painting process can be done in a few hours to days, which totally depends on you. But when you do it correctly, they’ll last for many years. So, follow this quick and easy tutorial to paint your bathroom cabinets like a professional.

Working Time: 4 hrs

Total Time: 3 days

Skill Level: Intermediate

Painting Bathroom Cabinet


Different Type of Bath Vanitie

Whether your bathroom cabinets are unfinished, sealed, or previously painted, you can paint both solid wood or engineered wood. Apart from wood, other cabinets such as melamine or thermofoil can also be painted. 

Bathroom Cabinet Paint Options

Painting Bathroom Cabinet


When it comes to painting options, they are mainly two kinds: water-based and oil-based. Many people prefer oil-based paint because they give a durable finish as compared to water-based paint. However, they take more time in drying, and these types of paints should always be applied in an extremely well-ventilated area.

On the other hand, water-based (latex) paint dries quickly and can be easily cleaned up with water. You can use semi-gloss, satin, or gloss paints.

How to Paint Bathroom Cabinets in 11 Simple Steps!

What You’ll Need

Below are all the things that you’ll require to paint your vanity:

Equipment / Tools

  • Bucket
  • Sponge
  • Rubber gloves
  • Respirator 
  • Marker
  • Screwdriver or cordless drill
  • Putty knife
  • Primer
  • Vacuum Cleaner
  • Paint tray
  • Paint sprayer or paint roller with a smooth-nap cover
  • Natural- or synthetic-bristle paintbrush


  • Drop cloths
  • Tack cloth
  • Painter’s tape
  • TSP (trisodium phosphate) or TSP substitute
  • Wood putty
  • 150-grit sandpaper
  • Tack cloth (optional)
  • Paint primer
  • Paint
  • New hinges (optional)
  • New knobs or pulls (optional)

Pre Preparation

Painting Bathroom Cabinet

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Before you start with the painting process, there are a few things that you need to do. First, empty your vanity. Remove all the stuff from the top and inside of the drawers. Now take some drop cloths and place them around the cabinets. This will avoid getting paint on the carpet or floor.

Just remember prepping the area is the key step in painting. Just take your time and do everything properly. Now your vanity is ready to be painted; you can move further in the process.  

Step 1: Remove Hardware

Painting Bathroom Cabinet


The first step is to remove all the cabinets because this will simply make your task so much easier. So carefully remove the knobs and other hardware from the cabinet doors. This will also ensure that if there is any paint spilling or overlapping, then your vanity will be safe. 

If you’re unable to remove the whole cabinet unit, at least try to remove doors.

Step 2: Remove Doors and Drawers

Painting Bathroom Cabinet


Use a screwdriver or use a drill to remove all the doors and hinges from the cabinets. Take one by one drawer out and set them aside on a dropcloth. 

Now apply painter’s tape on the interior of each cabinet door and drawer. If possible, try to label each piece as it will help you in the end when you’re assembling them.

Step 3: Clean the Cabinets

Painting Bathroom Cabinet


After you have taken all the doors and drawers out, it’s time to clean them. You can use Trisodium phosphate (TSP) or a less-toxic substitute to remove all grease and grime. 

TSP is an effective and inexpensive solution, but it can cause mild irritation to the skin. So it is better to wear rubber gloves when working with a TSP solution.

Step 4: Sand the Cabinet

Painting Bathroom Cabinet


After cleaning, the next step is sanding. It is important to remove old paint so that new paint sticks to the surface better, and you’ll get a polished look. First, make sure that there is no damage or holes in the drawers or doors. If you find any, then apply wood putty with the help of a putty knife to repair them. 

Leave it for drying for at least 10 minutes, and you can start sanding your cabinet. You can use 220-grit sandpaper or a wood sander to sand outside of the cabinets as well as the doors and drawer fronts. 

Step 5: Clean the Surface

After sanding, take a damp cloth and clean and remove all the dust and debris. You can also use a tack cloth to deep clean all of the surfaces. 

Step 6: Apply Primer

Painting Bathroom Cabinet


Begin applying a coat of primer of your choice to the exposed surfaces of the cabinet boxes and all of the doors and drawer fronts. Use a sprayer, roller, or brush to apply the layer correctly. If you’re using a brush, try to paint in long, smooth, even motions, so the brushstrokes are not visible. 

Don’t leave any spot or corner and also the edges of the cabinet doors. Allow it to dry completely. 

Note: If your bath cabinets are varnished cabinets, we recommend using an oil primer for the preliminary coat. 

Step 7: Start Painting Cabinets and Drawers

Painting Bathroom Cabinet


After all this work, now it’s finally time to paint. Pour a modest amount of your desired paint into a tray and start painting one by one each cabinet and door. You can use a paintbrush and roller to get the full coverage. 

Use a synthetic paintbrush or a sprayer for painting the first coat of water-based paint on doors, drawer fronts, and cabinet boxes. Whereas oil-based paints always require a natural-bristle brush or a sprayer. Cover all the sides and edges with the paint carefully. And allow the paint to dry as directed.

Note:  To get the perfect finished look:

  • Use Smooth Strokes
  • Try to paint in even strokes with your paintbrush to avoid streaks.
  • To paint larger areas of your vanity, use a mini-roller to make the job go faster.

Step 8: Allow Time to Dry

Once you’re done with the painting, allow the cabinet doors and drawers to completely dry. After you apply your second coat, make sure to leave it to dry for at least 24 hours or according to the manufacturer’s instructions. 

Step 9: Reassemble the Cabinets Doors

Painting Bathroom Cabinet


Once your paint dried completely, you can finally reattach all your cabinet doors and drawers. One by one, attach doors to the cabinet boxes and reattach the drawer fronts to the drawer boxes. This will give your cabinets a truly updated appearance.

Also Read: How To Buy A Vanity For Your Bathroom

Step 10: Add New Hardware

For a dramatic makeover, you can also replace your old hardware with new ones. Add some bold, new knobs that complement the new color of your bathroom vanity. Additionally, you can also match the hardware with the shape of your vanity mirror.

Step 11: Finishing Touches

Lastly, to make your bath look absolutely new and amazing, you have to add some final finishing touches. Add a woven fabric rug, which blends beautifully and brings a modern feel to the bathroom. If you want, you can also change the lighting to get a new and modern look. 

Do you want to paint your kitchen cabinets? Read our blog on How to Paint Kitchen Cabinets Without Sanding. In this blog, we’ve explained the whole procedure in simple steps. 


Just a single fresh coat of paint can transform the whole interior or look of any place or thing. This is one of the best ways to update and refresh your bathroom’s appearance and make it super attractive. The whole process will take less than 4 hours, and anyone can do this without the need for any professional help. 

I hope you find this step-by-step guide on painting bathroom cabinets easy and useful. If you find this post helpful, don’t forget to share it with your friends and family and help them to transform their ugly bathroom vanities. 

For more interesting DIY projects like this and more home improvement ideas, keep coming to Interiorcraze.